We only recommend products we love and that we think you will, too. We may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was written by our Commerce team.
E.l.f. Cosmetics makes some of the most popular primers on the market, but picking out the best one for your skin type very much isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach. There are a few things that all of the best e.l.f. primers have in common, though; mainly, they make your makeup last longer and apply more smoothly, but also, they look great when worn without makeup, as well. Beyond that, the right primer for you will depend on your specific skin concerns, such as redness, dryness, dullness, excess shine, or congested pores.
If you have dry skin, look for a hydrating primer made with nourishing ingredients like glycerin, aloe, hyaluronic acid, and botanically derived butters and oils. Meanwhile, oily skin types will likely want a mattifying primer that helps quell shine, while those with breakout-prone skin may want to opt for a primer that offers pore-clearing benefits through ingredients like salicylic acid. The actual texture of the primer is something to consider, too, and you’ll find everything from oils and putties to lotions and even a solid stick on this list.
A few other common denominators among the best e.l.f. primers? They’re all vegan, cruelty-free, and cost less than $15 on Amazon.
To find your perfect e.l.f. primer match, scroll on to shop seven of the brand’s top contenders.
1. Best-Selling e.l.f. Primer
The brand’s Poreless Putty Primer is favorite among Amazon shoppers and beauty pros alike — it has over 15,000 five-star reviews on Amazon, and it’s been featured on countless YouTube makeup channels and Instagram beauty accounts. It contains soothing green tea, hydrating glycerin and squalane, and the silicone dimethicone, which is a noncomedogenic ingredient that can make other ingredients more effective, and does a spectacular job of filling in and blurring pores. This primer is beloved for its long-lasting grip that helps makeup stay on all day long, and its velvety texture that glides over uneven skin to give it a smooth, flawless finish.
E.l.f.’s putty primer comes in two other versions, as well: ‘Luminous’, which is made hyaluronic acid and collagen and is ideal for dry skin, and ‘Matte’, an oil-free formula made with kaolin clay and charcoal, which oily skin types will love.
2. Best e.l.f. Primer For Acne-Prone Skin
According to Elite Daily associate commerce editor Carina Finn, “[e.l.f. Blemish Control Face Primer] has a silky smooth feel and pairs particularly well with the lightweight tinted sunscreens I tend to wear. I love that it can help even out my skin tone whenever I’m experiencing redness and it actually smells really nice!”
Made with vitamin E to moisturize, salicylic acid to clear out clogged pores, and the natural antiseptic tea tree oil, this primer offers an elegant matte finish, all-day oil control, and protection from future breakouts all in one fell swoop.
3. Best Hydrating Primer
This primer is best for people who are prone to dry or dehydrated skin because it’s infused with vitamins and grape seed oil to nourish your skin and leave it radiant, smooth, and soft. This is another extremely popular pick on Amazon, with over 10,000 five-star ratings (and over 1,000 glowing five-star reviews). It’s super lightweight, so it layers beautifully under makeup, but it’s also nice worn alone on bare skin.
4. Best Primer/Serum Hybrid
If you’re really looking to cut down on the steps in your morning routine, try this serum/primer hybrid (all you need is some SPF, and you’ll be good to go). Made with snow mushroom and hyaluronic acid to lock in moisture, as well as glycerin, collagen, and aloe to plump and hydrate your skin, this fragrance- and silicone-free primer can be worn alone as skin care or used for pre-makeup prep. You can also mix a few drops into your liquid foundation to thin it out and give it a dewy finish.
5. Best Primer For Glowy Skin
If you really want to get your glow on, try e.l.f.’s primer oil. It’s an ideal primer to wear without makeup, because it makes your skin look luminous and dewy, but if your skin is dry or flaky, it’d be great for pre-makeup prep, too, as it will help soften any particularly dry patches (just make sure to let it fully absorb before putting anything else on top). Along with jojoba, safflower, sunflower, grapeseed, and meadowfoam oils, this primer is made with hydrating squalane and aloe, and features a delightful tropical scent. Like the primer above, you can mix a few drops of this into your foundation to amp up your skin’s glow.
6. Best e.l.f. Primer Stick
Last but not least is this easy-to-apply primer stick, which is great for travel, since you don’t have to deal with any issues related to TSA guidelines or spills. It’s made with coconut and shea butters, so it’s really smooth and nourishing, and also gives off a bit of shimmery sheen. While you can blend this into your skin to use it as an all-over primer, you can also glide some onto your cheekbones like you would with highlighter. If you like a matte look or have oily skin, this probably isn’t the primer for you, but people with dry skin who love a dewy glow will love it. This primer is a part of the brand’s ‘Glow’ line, which also includes a moisturizer and face mist .